We do a lot of external communications here at SHIFT – whether it’s securing editorial coverage, managing owned content like company blogs, implementing social media initiatives that engage key audiences and influencers or creating compelling, shareable infographics.
Innovative internal communication is another unique challenge we’re often presented with by our clients. Whether it’s a large B2B tech brand or an up and coming startup, organizations have a huge need to properly reach their employees in ways that will engage and motivate. But, budgets for internal communications are not nearly as robust as other priorities such as media relations or social programs.
So how do you get scrappy and show your workforce some love without breaking the bank? We’d suggest eliminating the boring all-staff email, and replacing it with a fun video message from the CEO or other senior-level executive. If done in the right way, internal video content from the corner office can be incredibly engaging and cost effective. Here are some helpful tips and tricks:
No need to be Spielberg – your iPhone will work just fine
You won’t need to purchase or rent a cumbersome and hard to use video camera. The video recording capabilities of recent iPhone and Android models are excellent, so no need to overcomplicate things.
To optimize the sound, I’d recommend using a lapel mic that connects directly with your iOS or Android device. I’d also strongly encourage the newly-minted cameraperson to use a tripod that will stabilize the smart phone, ensuring the recording is smooth and steady.
Prepare talking points ahead of time
Have a chat in advance with your chief executive and star of the video – what are the key points they’ll want to convey to employees? Examples could be big wins that showcase growth and momentum for the business, calling out and congratulating employees or teams for big-time accomplishments, updates from HR and operations and exciting future plans. A well thought out plan of attack will help your CEO avoid rambling while make sure they hit the right tone.
Keep it short
The internal videos that receive the most engagement are succinct and stick to the most impactful topics that will excite employees (I’d recommend keeping it to 2 or 3 minutes).
Hand it off to SHIFT’s rock star creative team
Finally, we always hand off our video footage to the folks on SHIFT’s creative team, who do an incredible job of editing and branding the content to match the company’s culture, adding music, adding motion graphics and/or animation to the final product. It’ll be more than ready for prime time when they send it back and makes the final product a bit more special for the employees (more so than an all company email would).
If done in the right way, we’ve found that these types of quick and cost effective internal videos can do wonders for engagement throughout an organization – breaking up the monotony of your run of the mill emailed newsletter and allowing all employees to get to know their CEO in ways that would otherwise be impossible. We’d encourage any internal communications pro to give it a try!
Senior Account Manager